IMA 'shocked' over Patanjali's claim on Coronil, demands explanation from Health Minister Harsh Vardhan

Patanjali Ayurved had claimed Coronil received certification from the Ayush Ministry as a medicine supporting COVID-19 treatment as per the WHO's certification scheme

IMA 'shocked' over Patanjali's claim on Coronil, demands explanation from Health Minister Harsh Vardhan

Baba Ramdev releases evidence based Patanjali medicine for COVID-19, in the presence of Union Ministers Nitin Gadkari and Dr Harsh Vardhan, during a press conference in New Delhi. PTI File

New Delhi, February 22

The IMA on Monday expressed shock over the "blatant lie of WHO certification" for Patanjali's Coronil tablet, which the company claims is an evidence-based medicine to fight COVID-19, and demanded an explanation from Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan in whose presence the medicine was launched.

This comes in the wake of global health body, WHO, clarifying that it has not reviewed or certified the effectiveness of any traditional medicine for the treatment of COVID-19.

Yoga guru Ramdev's Patanjali Ayurved had on February 19 said that the Coronil tablet had received certification from the Ayush Ministry as a medicine supporting COVID-19 treatment as per the World Health Organization's certification scheme.

However, Patanjali's managing director Acharya Balkrishna later made a clarification about the certification through a tweet saying, "We want to clarify to avoid confusion that our WHO GMP compliant COPP certificate to Coronil is issued by DCGI, Government of India. It is clear that WHO do not approve or disapprove any drugs. WHO works for building a better, healthier future for people all over the world (sic)."

In a statement issued on Monday, the Indian Medical Association (IMA) said, “Being Health Minister of the country, how justified is it to release such falsely fabricated unscientific product to people of the whole country...can you clarify the time frame, time line for the so-called clinical trial of this said anti-corona product?"

"The country needs an explanation from the minister. The Indian Medical Association will also write to National Medical Commission for seeking suo moto explanation for his blatant disrespect to the code of conduct of Medical Council of India,” the IMA said.

"Indian Medical Association is shocked to note the blatant lie of WHO certification...," it said.

Haridwar-based Patanjali Ayurved had also released what it claimed was research work supporting Coronil's efficacy in COVID-19 treatment.

The announcement regarding the Ayush certification for Coronil and release of a research paper calling it the "first evidence-based medicine for COVID-19 by Patanjali" was done at an event here attended by Vardhan.

In a statement, Patanjali had said: "Coronil has received the Certificate of Pharmaceutical Product (CoPP) from the Ayush section of Central Drugs Standard Control Organisation as per the WHO certification scheme."     

However, WHO South-East Asia in a tweet said: "@WHO has not reviewed or certified the effectiveness of any traditional medicine for the treatment #COVID19."

Patanjali had introduced ayurveda-based Coronil on June 23 last year, when the pandemic was at its peak. It had to face severe criticism as it lacked scientific evidence regarding its efficacy. PTI

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